Award-winning musician, Samthing Soweto’s debut album, Isphithiphithi, was released on September 20th via Platoon to vast critical and commercial acclaim. Isphithiphithi (meaning the crowded or chaotic place) is Samthing Soweto’s labour of love. On Apple Music, the album reached No. 1 on the South Africa Top Albums Chart prior to even being released while still only available for pre-add. Upon release, all 13 tracks on the album immediately charted in the Top 32 on Apple Music’s Top 100 in South Africa.
Samthing Soweto was recently profiled by Rolling Stone, who proclaimed: “the album verges on beatific, with songs that are soft and bright and agile.”
To celebrate and promote the successes, Platoon, London and SA based artist services company, decided to merge the Worlds of Art and Music by facilitating the creation of a street art mural.
Watch the making of the Mural:
The Mural was painted by Street Artist Dbongz in collaboration with Baz-Art, Street Art NPO, and inspired by the album artwork which features Samthing Soweto dressed in MaXhosa Africa and designed by Tony Mokhononoana – which showcases a culturally rich and colourful proudly South African artist, the perfect inspiration for a mural.
“Being presented the opportunity to paint a mural of Samthing Soweto was a great highlight for me. The aim of the design for the Mural artwork was for it to be in the same spirit as the album art, for it to be one with the music. I wanted it to be such that when people see it, they could relate it to the character of Samthing Soweto and the music that he makes,” expresses Dbongz.
Dbongz adds: “The process of making the Mural was a beautiful and smooth one. Meeting Samthing Soweto at the beginning of it and getting to attend his album launch also played a huge part in the success of the project, as I got to experience the man behind the music and also the music by the man. So, I really got to be in touch with Isphithiphithi and depicting it in the Mural was pure fun and joy and I can only hope that it comes across as such to everyone who gets to see it.”
“The inspiration behind the artwork was to capture African aesthetic in a modern context. Traditional patterns and colours were taken into consideration to emphasise the beauty of African culture and to celebrate the vibrancy of Soweto. I believe anything can be turned into art; it’s all based on how the perspective is painted” shares Tony Mokhononoana.
The Mural can be viewed by the public in Johannesburg on Fox Street in Maboneng until Friday, 22 November 2019.
The QR code on the Mural allows passers-by who may not be aware of Samthing Soweto’s music to snap and stream his album on their chosen streaming platform.
The supporting arts have played a big role in Samthing Soweto’s campaign – with motion-graphics prevalent on his social media pages on peak release days, to him including a theatrical set design in the Market Theatre for the Isphithiphithi album launch, and will continue to do so with some very exciting music videos from the album to follow this summer.
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